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Selling your car? Don’t get stuck with someone else’s TollTag bills

Motorists are passing through more and more toll gantries, such as this one at DFW Airport. Residents who sell their cars should fill out a special Texas Department of Motor Vehicles form to ensure they don’t continue to receive bills for tolls incurred by the person who bought their vehicle.
Motorists are passing through more and more toll gantries, such as this one at DFW Airport. Residents who sell their cars should fill out a special Texas Department of Motor Vehicles form to ensure they don’t continue to receive bills for tolls incurred by the person who bought their vehicle. Star-Telegram

Planning to sell your car anytime soon?

There’s an important step you should take to avoid paying the new owner’s TollTag fees.

The good news is, this step is relatively easy, and a sure-fire way to ensure you don’t get stuck with tolls you didn’t incur.

Immediately after selling a car, go to the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles and fill out a Vehicle Transfer Notification. It takes about five to 10 minutes to fill out the form. The form can be filled out online at the agency’s website, or printed and mailed in.

Also, residents can visit a DMV office and take care of the paperwork there. For example, there is a DMV office in at 2425 Gravel Drive in east Fort Worth, near Trinity Boulevard and Handley-Ederville Road.

From time to time, stories surface about people who have been slapped with large toll bills — often totaling hundreds of dollars — after selling a car to someone who didn’t then immediately transfer the vehicle title into his or her name. It’s a tricky situation because you can’t control what a buyer does once he or she drives off with your old ride.

The latest example comes to us from CBS 11, which has posted a story about a Farmers Branch widow who sold her husband’s car collection to various buyers on Ebay but apparently didn’t file the appropriate Vehicle Transfer Notifications and continues to receive toll bills in the mail.

The bills are coming from the North Texas Tollway Authority. That’s the agency that manages the Dallas-Fort Worth region’s toll road system and also owns the TollTag brand. However, NTTA has no responsibility for identifying that correct owner of a vehicle, whether the vehicle has a TollTag on it or not.

Even if you remove your TollTags and license plates from your vehicle after the sale, the only way to ensure you don’t get stuck with someone else’s toll bills is to fill out the DMV Vehicle Transfer Notification.

Gordon Dickson: 817-390-7796, @gdickson

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